- a preparation for smelling, essentially of ammonium carbonate with some agreeable scent, used as a stimulant and restorative.
Origin of smelling salts
First recorded in 1830–40
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for smelling salts
Bracondale said, turning to them just as Miss Oliver returned with the bottle of smelling-salts.The White Lie
William Le Queux
She leant back and fanned herself, taking out her smelling-salts.The Twelfth Hour
Grace vanished again, and was back in two minutes with water and smelling-salts.Peggy
Laura E. Richards
A woman has no right to have any emotions that cannot be cured by smelling-salts!The Sorrows of Satan
He took a bottle of smelling-salts from the mantelpiece and smelt it.The Revolution in Tanner's Lane
- a pungent preparation containing crystals of ammonium carbonate that has a stimulant action when sniffed in cases of faintness, headache, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
- Any of various preparations of ammonium carbonate and perfume, sniffed as a restorative or stimulant especially to relieve faintness and headache.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.